Among many other changes to the global telecom business caused by a shift to internet, mobile and cloud communications, global bandwidth patterns have changed. In the past, long haul traffic was originated and terminated at central offices. As the internet become dominant, long-haul traffic began to originate and terminate at internet exchange points and other internet points of presence.
Now, with the dominance of mobile-consumed content and apps, generally cloud-based, traffic originates and terminates heavily at hyperscale data centers.
Asia-Pacific has been the fastest growing region in terms of hyperscale data center location and will continue to grow more rapidly over the next five years, although North America will still account for 43 percent of hyperscale data centers by the end of 2020, says Cisco.
Annual global cloud IP traffic will reach 14.1 ZB (1.2 ZB per month) by the end of 2020, up from 3.9 ZB per year (321 EB per month) in 2015, Cisco predicts, nearly quadrupling (3.7-fold) over the next five years.
Overall, cloud IP traffic will grow at a CAGR of 30 percent from 2015 to 2020. On a global basis, cloud IP traffic will account for more than 92 percent of total data center traffic by 2020.
Hyperscale cloud operators are defined by Cisco as entities representing more than US$1 billion in annual revenue from infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), or infrastructure hosting services (for example, Amazon/AWS, Rackspace, Google); more than US$2 billion in annual revenue from software as a service (SaaS) (for example, Salesforce, ADP, Google); or more than US$4 billion in annual revenue from Internet, search, and social networking (for example, Facebook, Yahoo, Apple); or more than US$8 billion in annual revenue from e-commerce and payment processing (for example, Amazon, Alibaba, eBay).
Hyperscale data centers will grow from 259 in number at the end of 2015 to 485 by 2020, according to Cisco, representing 47 percent of all installed data center servers by 2020.
Hyperscale data centers also represent a large portion of overall data, traffic, and processing power in data centers, accounting for 34 percent of total traffic within all data centers and driving 53 percent of in-data-center traffic by 2020.
Hyperscale data centers will also represent 57 percent of all data stored in data centers and 68 percent of total data center processing power.